10+ Year Member
Sep 10, 2008
Resident [Any Field]
I have received various opinions regarding the importance of the length of ACGME accreditation at particular programs. Some have said that it is relatively difficult to end up with anything less than a 5 year accreditation and anything less should be a red flag while others have said that accreditation is accreditation and not to sweat it.


10+ Year Member
5+ Year Member
Oct 13, 2006
West Bloomfield, MI
Attending Physician
5 years is the maximum. In the past, it used to be very difficult to get less than that, but that's not the case anymore. Now it's getting more and more difficult for even top name programs to get the full 5 years; most are getting 4 in the recent reviews. Between the huge jump in minimum surgical numbers last year and the 80 hour limit from a few years ago (relatively "few" from the standpoint of the ACGME), I think a lot of programs are going to get dinged pretty hard over the next few years.

I agree with those who say that accreditation is accreditation. Now, if a program is on probation, that's a different story. However, even there, it will become a question of why they're on probation. Sometimes it's a huge issue, but sometimes it's some nitpicky thing that has already been taken care of. If the attendings are beating residents with a bullwhip during surgery, that's different than if the residents of one class got 35 hours of pathology rather than the required 36 hours (IMO).
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